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1:32 German seatbelt sets (various)


Jim H
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1:32 German seatbelt sets (various)

HGW
Catalogue # see article for code and price
Available from HGW

 

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The latest flurry of new seatbelt releases from HGW are aimed at the recent flurry of German model aircraft kit to hit the market, from both major conflicts. Recently on LSM, we’ve seen reviews of the Fly Model Arado Ar 234B-2, as well as the Horten Ho 229, and also the beautiful Hansa-Brandenburg W.12 from Wingnut Wings. Jan Bobek, forever with his finger on the trigger, has catered for those who are now looking to build these latest releases, and of course, he has sent us these to look at today. The sets we have, all in 1:32, are:

 

  • 132542, Messerschmitt Bf 109G-10 (Orlon, Ersatz), for Revell kit, 240 Kč
  • 132556, Arado Ar 234B/B-2/N, for Fly Model kit, 272 Kč
  • 132557, Horten Ho 229 (Orlon, Ersatz), for Zoukei-mura kit, 240 Kč
  • 132558, Hansa-Brandenburg W.12, for Wingnut Wings kit, 240 Kč
  • 132560, Messerschmitt Me 262 (Orlon, Ersatz), for Hasegawa/Trumpeter etc, 240 Kč

 

Overview
If you’ve never used HGW seatbelts, then you really are missing out on an opportunity to add more realism to your projects. The new generation of their seatbelts are now all laser-cut, meaning you only need to snip them from their micro-fibre ‘fret’ The first thing you need to do (and some forget!) is to peel the thick paper backing from the textile sheet, and as you snip the various parts from the fret, scrunch them up in your fingers and then open them out again. This breaks any tension in the material, and allows them to be more realistically posed. You can now assemble the belts using small drops of CA, best applied on the end of a toothpick, or similar. Assembly is always very easy, with both textile and PE parts being identified by different colour markers on the assembly drawings. Unlike the RB Productions belts which are adjustable when complete, you will need to get a measure of your own specific model before setting any buckles and clasps into position, and then gluing them permanently.

 

Now, you can apply your belts to your model, using a little CA, and draping them in a realistic fashion. Once set, apply a coat of gloss varnish to them and weather them with oils. Apart from the extra realism, you will notice another little quirk. A whole range of laser-engraved stitching will now be easily seen! It’s quite difficult to see these unless you apply a wash.

 

Of course, there is no need to paint these belts, as they are all pre-printed, and contain excellent detail, such as serial numbers and data patches etc. Laser cutting has also provided another nifty effect too, and that is that the edges of the parts have an extremely subtle scorched effect which darkens the ink. This is perfect as it looks just like shading, and helps to add some weathering, albeit unintentional.

Now, you will notice that some sets are very similar, and in some cases, they may be identical. The reason that HGW release sets such as these, and not generic ones is that some belts, their fasteners, and securing, may have been slightly different. When you buy a set for a specific model, you can be assured that it will be perfectly compatible. However, if your specific, named set is out of stock, you may be able to substitute it for a different named set. Just check that the components are the same, and all will be well.

 

Each set is packed into a re-sealable letterbox sleeve that has a stiff piece of card to protect the contents. In the front, a rather attractive packing slip denotes the contents, and onto this, both the textile sheet, and the Eduard-manufactured PE parts are tacked into place with easily peel-able glue. To the rear, a slip is included which shows construction. Everything appears to be easy to follow, and indeed, I have made many of these without any problem.

 

132542, Messerschmitt Bf 109G-10 (Orlon, Ersatz)

 

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Please note here that these are the late-war green Orlon material, and may not necessarily be good for your model. The caveat here is to check your references. If you can’t find information to the contrary, showing beige belts, then these green belts look rather good.

 

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132556, Arado Ar 234B/B-2/N

 

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This set caters to both single and two-seat Ar 234 kits that Fly Model recently released. If you are only building the single seat machine, it’s still worth buying this dual set, as having a spare set of belts will prove to be a cheaper option than purchasing a second set for a different, compatible model. This set of course represents the lighter, beige belts which were pretty universal during the war.

 

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132557, Horten Ho 229 (Orlon, Ersatz)

 

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The beauty of the Ho 229 is that its ZM kit incarnation never actually flew. As it never existed beyond prototype stage, it’s entirely likely that it would have had the newer, green Orlon belts, unless there was a supply chain shortage. Who knows?! As a result, HGW have printed these to represent those later style belts, and they sure look good to me.

 

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132558, Hansa-Brandenburg W.12

 

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A departure from WW2 as we look at belts for a Great War aircraft. This time, we see a set designed for this attractive sea-borne biplane, consisting of two lap-belts for both the pilot and rear gunner/observer. For this specific release, I would look at perhaps burnishing the PE parts, or washing it heavily in black/dark grey enamel.

 

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132560, Messerschmitt Me 262 (Orlon, Ersatz)

 

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If you buy an Me 262 kit, the chances are it will state that the seatbelts are beige. Again, it’s not inconceivable that these late war fighters may have been fitted with the green Orlon belts, and this set helps to cater to that possibility. I can’t see any difference between this and the Ho 229 set, so if this specific is out of stack at your LHS, you can use the Horten, and vice-versa.

 

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Conclusion
I’m a big fan of these sets, and really don’t like to build a project without a set of compatible belts from HGW. I’m pleased to see this range expand and cater to new releases almost as soon as they are announced, and HGW’s reference means that you know your set will indeed work specifically for your project. Superbly produced and at a more than reasonable price. Give them a try!

 

Very highly recommended

 

My sincere thanks to HGW for the samples seen here. To purchase directly, click the links in the review.

 

James H

 

 

 

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As per the norm great review. I've picked up several sets of these over time and it does make me laugh how there packaged for individual planes given there basically the same through the period. It would be nice if they did larger sets say with 5/6 belts in them at a better price. Would save them a good margin in packing costs etc?

 

The laser versions are much better as well. Trying to cut out the other ones accurately is a recipe for disaster as I found to my own cost on more than 1 occasion.

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I have no problems cutting the "other ones". I'm a fan of their 132011 Luftwaffe Fighters set.
Its says "set for two", but in fact....you get 3. Two shades of beige and one green.

3 sets for just over 7 euros...I gladly cut them myself for that amount :)

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